Agenda and draft minutes

Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education (SACRE) - Wednesday, 30 September 2020 5.00 pm

Venue: Zoom meeting

Contact: Lizzie Rich  01344 352253


No. Item


Election of Chairman


RESOLVED that Councillor Dr Gareth Barnard be elected Chairman for the municipal year 2020/21.


Appointment of Vice-Chairman


RESOLVED that Madeline Diver be elected Vice-Chairman for the municipal year 2020/21.


Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 231 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on


The minutes of the meeting held on 13 July 2020 were approved as a correct record.



Review membership


SACRE welcomed Ossie Anderson-Peled to the meeting as the new proposed Jewish representative, subject to her nomination being formalised.


It was noted that there were nominations outstanding for Free Church and Church of England representatives.  


There was one more vacancy for a Teacher representative.


Action / Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 223 KB

Additional documents:


Madeline Diver updated members on the Forward Plan progress. A working group had been established to develop the Forward Plan at the last SACRE meeting, and had met several times since.


The Working Group was focussing on the priorities which would produce supporting materials for schools, and support the local area and community involvement, and consult schools on their perception of the syllabus. It was agreed that the priorities around holding schools to account would be put on hold until the next academic year in light of the existing pressures on schools relating to COVID-19.


Faith groups were being asked for their support to provide RE teaching resources and collective worship resources, including digital visits.


SACRE thanked Madeline and the working group for her work on the Forward Plan so far.


Annual Report pdf icon PDF 542 KB


Anne Andrews presented the SACRE Annual Report for 2019/20.


Tracey and Anne agreed to check NASACRE’s position on reporting grades in the Annual Report in light of COVID-19 and predicted grades. (Action: Anne Andrews/Tracey Bradshaw)


SACRE would sign off the Annual Report at its next meeting.


Budget update


Tracey Bradshaw advised SACRE on the most recent budget position.


It was noted that Anne had been paid for the previous year, and the Local Authority had bought into the Dioceses’ SLA for the upcoming year.


SACRE noted that it was important to consider the forward planning around the Agreed Syllabus and Action Plan.



Update on RE Network meeting


Anne Andrews updated members on the recent RE Network meeting.


18 teachers had attended, and had considered a KS2 question ‘Do worship and prayer make you part of a community?’ which had generated interesting conversation in light of current restrictions on corporate worship.


From feedback received, teachers had seemed to find the session useful. It was expected that holding the meeting virtually had helped more people to attend following issues with venues and parking over the last few months.


SACRE queried whether any teachers had felt excluded from the session by the virtual element of the meeting. Tracey agreed to check this in the feedback received. (Action: Tracey Bradshaw)



Feedback from LA officer on situation in schools across Bracknell Forest


Tracey Bradshaw provided an update on the reopening of schools following COVID-19 lockdown.


All schools in the borough had an allocated Standards and Effectiveness Partner (STEP) to provide support from the Local Authority.


All Bracknell Forest schools had reopened, and SACRE commented that this was a testament to the leadership and dedication of school staff. SACRE thanked everyone who taught in schools, and all support staff for their work to keep schools safe.


It was noted that behaviour had been good in general, and schools were working hard to pursue a high standard of behaviour. Schools were working to build resilience in their children and young people around their return to school. Attendance had been generally good.


Schools were working hard to meet the learning needs of their pupils, and to address barriers to learning.


In response to discussion, the following points were noted:

·        Schools had got used to the new normal in most cases, and were working closely with Senior Leadership Teams, Governing Bodies and parents to establish a new business as usual.

·        Teaching representatives commented on the positive support received from the Local Authority, and that Headteachers had been really grateful.

·        It was felt that children had benefited from getting back into structure.

·        It was noted that other Berkshire SACREs had established extra support for teachers to prevent isolation and loneliness, and support staff wellbeing. SACRE commented that while this sounded like a good idea, the existing SACRE budget could not support additional support. 


Westhill project and SACRE Hub update


Anne Andrews updated SACRE on the Westhill project and SACRE Hub.


The support notes for the films made using the Westhill bid funding had been produced, and a sample film and support notes had been sent to Truetube. The Hub was waiting to hear back whether Truetube would be happy to host the films and if not, alternative hosting solutions would be sought as the files were too large to email.


The project had been filmed in 4 venues so far, including two questions from each Key Stage posed to at least two different faith representatives each time. Visits to a Gurdwara and Baptist church were planned for the next few weeks.


Anne agreed to send round a sample of the supporting notes to SACRE members. (Action: Anne Andrews)


SACRE members watched a sample clip of a video filmed in a Hindu temple.


Any Other Business


Madeline Diver invited all SACRE members to attend the Interfaith Forum’s event over Zoom on 12 November 2020, which would discuss how faith views illness and death.


Clare Hawkins advised that she had a Humanist contact who was interested in joining SACRE. It was agreed that SACRE members would meet this person in a private meeting to hear their reasons for wanting to join SACRE, and a decision would be communicated at the next meeting.



Dates of Future Meetings


3 November 2020


SACRE agreed to hold an additional meeting in December.